Mckinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act
If your family lives in any of the following situations:
- In a shelter, motel, vehicle, or campground
- On the street
- In an abandoned building, trailer, or other inadequate accommodations
- Doubled up with friends or relatives because you cannot find or afford housing
Then your preschool-aged and school-aged children have certain rights or protections under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act.
Your children have the right to:
- Go to school, no matter where you live or how long you have lived there. They must be given access to the same public education, including preschool education, provided to other children.
- Continue in the school they attended before you became homeless or the school they last attended, if that is your choice and it is feasible. If a school sends your child to a school other than the one you request, the school must provide you with a written explanation and offer you the right to appeal the decision.
- Receive transportation to the school they attended before your family became homeless or the school they last attended, if you or a guardian requests such transportation.
- Attend a school and participate in school programs with children who are not homeless. Children cannot be separated from the regular school program because they are homeless.
- Enroll in school without giving a permanent address. Schools cannot require proof of residency that might prevent or delay school enrollment.
- Enroll and attend classes while the school arranges for the transfer of school and immunization records or any other documents required for enrollment.
- Enroll and attend classes in the school of your choice even while the school and you seek to resolve a dispute over enrolling your children.
- Receive the same special programs and services, if needed, as provided to all other children served in these programs.
- Receive transportation to school and to school programs.
- Not be stigmatized or segregated based on their homeless status. Appropriate actions will be enforced as identified in board policy (student conduct) and district student handbooks.
When you move, you should do the following:
- Contact the school district’s local liaison for homeless education (see phone number below) for help in enrolling your child in a new school or arranging for your child to continue in his or her former school. (Or, someone at a shelter, social services office, or the school can direct you to the person you need to contact.)
- Contact the school and provide any information you think will assist the teachers in helping your child adjust to new circumstances.
- Ask the local liaison for homeless education, the shelter provider, or a social worker for assistance with clothing and supplies. if needed.
- You are encouraged to request your building secretary for the "Homeless Immediate Needs - Services Request" form.
Dispute Resolution Process:
- If homeless, you have the right to dispute any placement or service decisions that the school district makes regarding your child. You are encouraged to first contact the district's "Homeless Liaison" with any questions or concerns. If, following this contact, you still have concerns or questions, please provide written documentations of those concerns to the district office, a meeting will be held with the appropriate administrators in hopes to arrive at a resolution.
If you need further assistance, call the National Center for Homeless Education Toll-free Help Line number: 1-800-308-2145